You are what you do, not what you say
Meanings shift over time. Words evolve, get corrupted, become obsolete.
When I was a kid, reading was about yielding to somebody else's experiences and emotions, shared or not. It was about making sense of my life by way of comparison with another's.
The meaning began to shift when I started writing for a living. Reading became studying, expanding my vocabulary, acquiring information. There were humdrum books and tedious books that felt like class requirements. I started going for tomes that “serious” readers have deemed worthy. I went for subjects an “intellectual” should know. Usually: not enjoyable. ᴰᶦˢᶜˡᵃᶦᵐᵉʳ: ᴱᵛᵉʳʸᵒⁿᵉ ˢʰᵒᵘˡᵈ ʳᵉᵃᵈ ᶜʰᵃˡˡᵉⁿᵍᶦⁿᵍ ᵇᵒᵒᵏˢ ᶠʳᵒᵐ ᵗᶦᵐᵉ ᵗᵒ ᵗᶦᵐᵉᵎ ᴶᵘˢᵗ ⁿᵒᵗ ˢᵒ ᵐᵘᶜʰ ᵗʰᵃᵗ ʳᵉᵃᵈᶦⁿᵍ ᵇᵉᶜᵒᵐᵉˢ ᵃ ᶜʰᵒʳᵉ.
Pretty soon I was unable to distinguish between what I felt I needed to read and what I actually wanted to read. The word reading has become disassociated from what originally got me into it. The reason I'm reading at present is far removed from my original reason for engaging in it.
Now there's a big empty space in my reading history.
We are what we do — not what we say, not the things we like, not anything else. I should stop posting pictures of books on Instagram and start reading.